Approved by the Board on May 18th 2012
This document describes in general terms the procedures which will continue the implementation of the Student Union’s language strategy approved in the Representative Council meeting 6/2010 from the year 2012 onwards. If the Representative Council amends the language strategy, this document will be considered outdated.
Described below are continuing procedures which the student union actors implement in their daily work.
1. Student Union’s essential documents are translated into three languages
Essential documents related to advocacy work are translated into three languages, so that language minorities can monitor the student union activities, participate in discussions and have full impact. Important day-to-day documents, such as instructions regarding the student union services and activities, newsletters and other documents are provided in three languages.
- Essential documents concerning advocacy, such as statements, policy papers approved by the Representative Council, newsletters, opinions published in newspapers as well as the board programme and its updates or their summaries will be translated into three languages within a week of their publication.
- Openings for halloped positions (i.e. openings for student members in university administration) and all information regarding the Representative Council elections will be published in all three languages simultaneously.
- Headlines in meeting invitations of the Representative Council must be translated into three languages.
- Subheadings of the minutes of the Board will be translated into English and Swedish within one month from the meeting.
- Information about other official documents must be made available in Swedish and English on request. Examples of such documents are minutes, draft resolutions, budget, financial statement and balance sheet.
- The weekly newsletter will be translated into three languages within two days of publication.
- More extensive guides, such as the legal rights’ guide, halloped guide and association guides will be translated into three languages after they are finished, primarily within six months of publication.
- Other guides are translated into three languages when appropriate. The communications sector will annually evaluate the need to update translations.
- The student union rules, housing guidelines, housing information packages and different forms, contracts, contract drafts and check lists used at AYY’s service points will be made available in three languages.
- Other brochures, guides, publications, surveys and the calendar published by the Student Union are translated within the limits of available translation resources. The Student Union actors should clarify the possibility to use translation services on a situational basis.
- Signs and notifications are written in three languages.
- Multilingualism is promoted in AYY’s media.
- Trilingualism is visible in AYY’s visual style and insignia.
Overall responsibility: communications sector
2. Ayy.fi website is trilingual
In particular, static material on the website is mainly identical in three languages. In principle, all material on the website may be of interest to students in all language groups. Only if the information only concerns members of a certain language group for a justified reason, it does not have to be translated.
- Static material added on the website is delivered immediately to translators.
- Indicative translations of material which is updated often, such as news, events and discussions, are created with the help of a translator, translation programme and summaries.
- On the website and in training courses, associations are encouraged to add information on their events to their website in several languages.
- Persons in charge of language affairs with contact details are added to websites.
Overall responsibility: communications sector
3. Events and activities open to all language groups
It is easy for language minority members to take part in the events and activities of the Student Union and the associations operating within AYY. Interaction between students of different language groups is lively.
- It is recommended to produce multilingual event advertisements, invitations and additional material.
- The student union events aim to increase programme suitable for language minorities.
- Associations and volunteers are encouraged to communicate in many languages about their activities, and organise activities and events which are also suitable for language minorities. Associations are encouraged to appoint a person in charge of international affairs, whose duty is to attend to the use of the English language in the association’s communications and activities, among other things.
- All operators are encouraged to use summaries in daily communications, such as e-mail lists, training courses and various events if producing a precise translation is too burdening.
Responsibility: organisation and cultural sector
4. Language minority representatives involved in influence work
Language minorities must also have a genuine opportunity to influence the activities of the Student Union and the University.
- Representative Council groups are encouraged to take language minorities into account in all their activities, particularly in candidate recruitment and campaigning in the Representative Council elections.
- Simultaneous interpreting in English is organised in the Representative Council meetings if non-Finnish speakers are present. Meeting speeches can be held in Finnish, Swedish or English.
- English or at least English summaries and titles should be used in e-mail lists.
- Evening meetings of the Representative Council do not provide interpretation, but English and Swedish may be used when necessary. Slides in presentations and introductions should be made in English and special terms should be mentioned in Finnish, English and Swedish when applicable.
- Material discussed in the Representative Council meeting is available in three languages. Translations are submitted at least five days before the meeting. Only a document version preceding the meeting is translated, and further information on versions in progress will be provided on a request.
- The Student Union encourages language minorities to apply for halloped positions and supports them in their duties.
Overall responsibility: international and education policy sector
5. Support and training of staff members
Staff members are able to operate in three languages and do not consider trilingualism a burden or a negative aspect of their work. The staff members have adequate support and resources for the implementation of trilingualism. The implementation of the language strategy is not solely the responsibility of certain sectors. All operators should take the language strategy into account at their own initiative.
- Training courses are organised for the staff on a regular basis, where clear practices concerning translations and the use of different languages are discussed.
- The staff can agree to complete language courses suitable for one’s professional needs with the support of the employer.
- When hiring new employees, adequate language skills and a positive attitude towards the use of foreign languages is among the hiring criteria.
Overall responsibility: main sector
6. Student advocacy
Aalto University is an international university, which offers students diverse opportunities for an international learning environment and high-quality education in three languages.
- In cooperation with Aalto University and other interest groups, the Student Union promotes advocacy goals in accordance with Section 4 of the language strategy.
Overall responsibility: international sector